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The names of faculty employed by the 76 member social work programs of the Group for the Advancement of Doctoral Education in Social Work were retrieved via a web-search. This resulted in a list of 2204 social work faculty. Their individual H-Indices were then obtained, using either the Publish or Perish software, or via manual calculations from Google Scholar. The top 100 most influential contemporary social work faculty were identified, resulting in a listing of individuals who have published relatively large numbers of scholarly works which themselves have been subsequently highly cited. Apart from recognizing these productive individuals, listing them and their home institutions will permit future researchers to examine the causes and correlates of high academic productivity.
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Journal of Social Service Research
ISSN: 0148-8376 (Print) 1540-7314 (Online) Journal homepage:
The 100 Most Influential Contemporary Social
Work Faculty as Assessed by the H-Index
Bruce A. Thyer, Thomas E. Smith, Philip Osteen & Tyler Carter
To cite this article: Bruce A. Thyer, Thomas E. Smith, Philip Osteen & Tyler Carter (2019) The 100
Most Influential Contemporary Social Work Faculty as Assessed by the H-Index, Journal of Social
Service Research, 45:5, 696-700, DOI: 10.1080/01488376.2018.1501793
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Published online: 18 Feb 2019.
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The 100 Most Influential Contemporary Social Work Faculty as Assessed by
the H-Index
Bruce A. Thyer
, Thomas E. Smith
, Philip Osteen
, and Tyler Carter
Florida State University, College of Social Work, Florida State University, Tallahassee, Florida, USA;
University of Utah, College of
Social Work, Salt Lake City, Utah, USA
The names of faculty employed by the 76 member social work programs of the Group for
the Advancement of Doctoral Education in Social Work were retrieved via a web-search. This
resulted in a list of 2204 social work faculty. Their individual H-Indices were then obtained,
using either the Publish or Perish software, or via manual calculations from Google Scholar.
The top 100 most influential contemporary social work faculty were identified, resulting in a
listing of individuals who have published relatively large numbers of scholarly works which
themselves have been subsequently highly cited. Apart from recognizing these productive
individuals, listing them and their home institutions will permit future researchers to exam-
ine the causes and correlates of high academic productivity.
H-Index; impact factor;
social work faculty;
scholarly influence; citations
The evaluation of social work faculty is an
inexact science and may involve separate meth-
ods to appraise teaching effectiveness, contribu-
tions to professional service, and scholarly
impact. Long-standing measures of scholarship
have included tabulating the numbers of publica-
tions authored by the faculty member in the
form of articles in professional journals, chapters
and books. A more recent metric involves count-
ing the citations to a faculty members publica-
tions, with the inference made that scholarly
works that are little cited make less of a scholarly
contribution to disciplinary intellectual discourse
than works that are cited a great deal
(Westbrook, 1960). Scholarly databases such as
the Web of Science and Google Scholar make it
possible to see how often a given publication has
been cited, and the total number of citations
accumulated by a given author for all of their
oeuvre. Although an admittedly limited way to
assess influence, citation counts have emerged as
a broadly accepted indicator of scholarly influ-
ence and are now widely included in making pro-
motion and tenure decisions, and as one criteria
used to allocate academic awards. Citations to
ones work also have a financial impact in terms
of academic raises and merit bonuses (Balaban,
1996; Diamond, 1986).
A more sophisticated way to tabulate ones cit-
ation impact is called the H-Index, created by
Hirsch (2005) and is defined as A scientist has
index hif hof his/her N
papers have at least h
citations each, and the other (N
h) papers have
no more than hcitations each(p. 16569). For
example, an author who has 10 publications
which have been cited at least 10 times will have
an h-index of 10. An author that has five cita-
tions which have been cited at least five times
each would have an H-Index of five. An author
of 10 publications, but only five of which have
been cited at least five times would have an H-
Index of five. Thus, simply authoring many pub-
lications will not increase ones H-Index unless
these works are cited. Higher H-Indices are expo-
nentially more difficult to achieve. Moving from
an H-Index of 510 is much easier than moving
from 30 to 35, for example, being dependent not
only on the raw numbers of publications but also
CONTACT Bruce A. Thyer Florida State University, College of Social Work, Florida State University, 296 Champions Way,
Tallahassee, FL 32306.
ß2019 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC
2019, VOL. 45, NO. 5, 696700
upon the subsequent citations to ones works.
The use of the H-Index has been widely adopted
by many academic disciplines and professions,
including social work. Popularity aside, H-Index
scores have been identified to be highly corre-
lated with other bibliometric ratings of impact
and subjective perceptions of scholarly impact
(Hodge & Lacasse, 2011a). The H-index has been
used to evaluate individual social work faculty
(Hodge, Kremer, & Vaughn, 2016; Marshall
et al., 2016), social work programs (by combining
the H-Indices of a programs faculty to arrive at
an programs overall H-Index) (Barner, Holosko,
Thyer, & King, 2015), highly cited social work
articles (e.g., Martinez, Herrera, Contreras, Ruiz,
& Herrera-Viedma, 2015), and social work jour-
nals (Hodge & Lacasse, 2011a, 2011b; Lacasse,
Hodge, & Bean, 2011). These efforts within social
work parallel those undertaken in other fields
such as psychology (Diener, Oishi, & Park, 2014;
Farrell et al., 2016; Haslam, Stratemeyer, &
Vargas-Saenz, 2016; Nosek et al., 2010) and soci-
ology (Jacobs, 2016).
We extended these prior forms of bibliometric
analyses to calculate the 100 most influential
contemporary social work faculty as assessed by
the H-Index. There are several reasons for doing
this. One is to establish descriptively a tabulation
of current social work faculty whose scholarship
is having the greatest impact (in terms of being
highly cited). It is appropriate to publicly recog-
nize these individuals for their immense contri-
butions to academic discourse and to the
intellectual life of the profession. Another reason
for identifying these individuals is that future
researchers can undertake analyses to ascertain
factors correlated with high levels of productivity
(e.g., Are certain doctoral-granting institutions
disproportionately presented among the back-
grounds of these authors? Do the home institu-
tions of these social work faculty share certain
characteristics? What may be the roles of
selected demographic variables in promoting
high-impact scholarship?). By preparing such a
descriptive list now, scholars will be able to
update these tabulations to see how the list has
changed over time (e.g., Are women scholars
more represented?)
Sample of Faculty
The faculty listings for each of the 76 social work
programs listed on the website of the Group for the
Advancement of Doctoral Education in Social Work
were reviewed (
ship) and we developed a list of 2204 social work
faculty employed by programs offering a doctoral
degree in social work. Only individuals holding a
doctoral degree in their respective field (PhD, DSW,
EdD, MD, JD) were included for data collection.
Data Collection
The number of citations for each listed faculty
member was determined using the H-Index as cal-
culated by the Publish or Perish (PoP) software
program (Harzing, 2007). PoP draws on the
Google Scholar database and systematically produ-
ces an H-Index for that individual faculty member.
For faculty who had a Google Scholar profile, the
listed h-index score on their profile was recorded.
For those without a profile, a manual count was
conducted. To assess the reliability of manual
counts, PoP H-Index scores were collected for the
125 cases with the largest listed H-Indices. The
PoP-derived H-Index matched the Google Scholar-
based manual count with a Cronbachs alpha score
of 0.995, suggesting the essential equivalence
between the PoP and manually-derived H-indices
When there were discrepancies, the actual publica-
tion was retrieved to ensure which count was cor-
rect. The collection window for manual H-Index
scoring was from September 7, 2015 to January 31,
2016 (N¼2204). The collection time frame for
PoP-derived H-Index scores occurred from
February 11, 2016 to February 21, 2016.
Table 1 lists the top 100 most influential contem-
porary social work faculty, as assessed by the
The individuals appearing in Table 1 deserve to
be recognized for their significant contributions
to the professions intellectual life. Their works
are substantive both in terms of quantity, the
sheer numbers of published works, but also in
terms of their quality, or utility, being used by
others. A substantial proportion of scholarly
articles are never cited (Hamilton, 1990), further
highlighting the significant impact the authors of
very highly cited papers exert on the field.
One aspect of the results that is rather striking
is that among the 10 most influential social work
faculty, 8 individuals are found who are not
themselves social workers. Only Steketee (#8) and
Barth (#9) have social work degrees. The other
eight hold doctorates in fields such as sociology
(Hawkins, Catalano, Mechanic, Vega), epidemi-
ology (Brownson), psychology (Bengston,
Jaccard) and medicine (Shear). These are persons
housed in a social work program and undoubt-
edly conduct much high-quality work in the field
of social services. Additional nonsocial workers
appear throughout our list (e.g., Charles Figley),
and our field is most fortunate that these persons
have chosen to pursue careers within our aca-
demic programs. But does it say something about
the quality of the research training obtained via
Table 1. 125 social work faculty ranked by PoP H-Index.
Faculty name School H-Index
1 J David Hawkins University of Washington 91
2 Richard F Catalano Jr University of Washington 88
3 David Mechanic Rutgers 87
4 Ross C Brownson Washington University 84
5 Vern Bengtson University of Southern California 76
6 James Jaccard NYU 73
7 Katherine Shear Columbia University 72
8 Gail Steketee Boston University 72
9 Richard P Barth University Maryland- Baltimore 63
10 William Vega University of Southern California 63
11 Richard (James) Gelles University of Pennsylvania 62
12 Jane Waldfogel Columbia University 60
13 Sheryl I Zimmerman UNC Chapel Hill 58
14 Marsha Mailick University of Wisconsin-Madison 58
15 Robert Joseph Taylor University of Michigan 57
16 Lawrence Palinkas University of Southern California 55
17 Jens Ludwig University of Chicago 53
18 David Takeuchi Boston College 52
19 Linda M Chatters University of Michigan 52
20 Peter Conrad Brandeis University 50
21 Matthew W Kreuter Washington University 50
22 Steven C Marcus University of Pennsylvania 48
23 Irwin Garfinkel Columbia University 47
24 Stephen Crystal Rutgers 47
25 Hortensia Amaro University of Southern California 47
26 Penelope Trickett University of Southern California 47
27 Nabila El-Bassel Columbia University 46
28 Edward C Chang University of Michigan 46
29 Charles R Figley Tulane 45
30 Sue Levkoff University of South Carolina 44
31 Jeffrey L Edleson UC Berkley 43
32 Jennifer L Skeem UC Berkley 43
33 Mark Umbreit University of Minnesota 43
34 Jan Steven Greenberg University of Wisconsin-Madison 43
35 Bruce Thyer Florida State 42
36 Jerome C Wakefield NYU 42
37 Elizabeth Wells University of Washington 41
38 Mark W Fraser UNC Chapel Hill 40
39 Claudia J Coulton Case Western 39
40 Michael G Vaughn Saint Louis University 39
41 Phyllis Solomon University of Pennsylvania 39
42 Iris Chi University of Southern California 39
43 Steven P Schinke Columbia University 38
44 David K Cohen UC Los Angeles 38
45 Robert F Schilling UC Los Angeles 38
46 Gary L Bowen UNC Chapel Hill 38
47 Ram Cnaan University of Pennsylvania 38
48 Todd Herrenkohl University of Washington 38
49 Diane M Morrison University of Washington 38
50 Michael Sherraden Washington University 38
51 Louisa Gilbert Columbia University 37
52 Mark E Courtney University of Chicago 37
53 Daniel G Saunders University of Michigan 37
54 Daniel Flannery Case Western 36
55 Deborah K Padgett NYU 36
56 Ronald William Toseland University at Albany (SUNY) 36
57 Michael Fendrich University of Connecticut 36
58 Matthew O Howard UNC Chapel Hill 36
59 Susan B Sorenson University of Pennsylvania 36
60 Charles Glisson University of Tennessee 36
61 Luis H Zayas UT Austin 36
62 Karl G Hill University of Washington 36
63 Katherine Magnuson University of Wisconsin-Madison 36
64 Debra Haire-Joshu Washington University 36
65 Nancy Morrow-Howell Washington University 36
66 Dennis P Culhane University of Pennsylvania 35
67 Kevin Haggerty University of Washington 35
68 Douglas A Luke Washington University 35
69 Ruth G McRoy Boston College 34
70 Deborah L Tolman Hunter College (CUNY) 34
71 Richard M Tolman University of Michigan 34
Table 1. Continued.
Faculty name School H-Index
72 Ron Avi Astor University of Southern California 34
73 Craig Nagoshi UT Arlington 34
74 Melissa Jonson-Reid Washington University 34
75 Gerald J Mahoney Case Western 34
76 David R Hodge Arizona State 33
77 James Midgley UC Berkley 33
78 Yeheskel (Zeke) Hasenfeld UC Los Angeles 33
79 Deborah Gorman-Smith University of Chicago 33
80 Lisa Berlin University Maryland- Baltimore 33
81 Joseph A Himle University of Michigan 33
82 John Brekke University of Southern California 33
83 Michael W Arthur University of Washington 33
84 Andres Gil Florida International 32
85 James Lubben Boston College 32
86 Neil Gilbert UC Berkley 32
87 Harold Pollack University of Chicago 32
88 Kathleen Ell University of Southern California 32
89 John S Wodarski University of Tennessee 32
90 Cynthia GS Franklin UT Austin 32
91 Paula Nurius University of Washington 32
92 Amy Horowitz Fordham University 31
93 Flavio Marsiglia Arizona State 31
94 Jill Levenson Barry 31
95 Aloen L Townsend Case Western 31
96 Eileen Gambrill UC Berkley 31
97 Steven P Segal UC Berkley 31
98 Sydney Hans University of Chicago 31
99 Allen Rubin University of Houston 31
100 Catherine Cubbin UT Austin 31
101 Peter J Pecora University of Washington 31
102 Enola K Proctor Washington University 31
103 Laurie E Powers Portland State 31
698 T. E. SMITH ET AL.
social work doctorates that many of the very
most productive faculty in our field were trained
through other disciplinary traditions and lack a
social work educational background?
Although it is important to identify our fields
most influential contemporary social work faculty,
there are some limitations to this approach. The
H-Index is subject to artificial inflation when
authors inappropriately and frequently cite their
past publications in contemporary writing, thus
rendering this metric a potentially inaccurate
measure of true value as determined via legitimate
citations from other independent scholars. The H-
Index may favor male authors (Geraci, Balsis, &
Busch, 2015) as men seem to engage in self-cit-
ation (which artificially inflates ones H-Index)
more often than do women (King, Bergstrom,
Correll, Jacquet, & West, 2017). Senior faculty,
administrators, and journal editors may coerce
authorships and citations from junior researchers
that can also have the effect of elevating the senior
facultys H-Index above its legitimate value (Kwok,
2008). It is also recognized that not all citations to
an authors work are laudatory. Someone who
writes a number of inflammatory papers or ones
that contain egregious errors may well have his or
her work extensively cited by others, but this does
not equate to making a positive contribution to
knowledge. However, such potential contaminants
to the purity of the H-Index would seem to exert
their malignant effect across the board, so to
speak, and not greatly influence the relative rank-
ings which are presented in Table 1, or signifi-
cantly impact our listing of the 100 most
influential contemporary social work faculty.
Lack of resources precluded the tabulation of
the several thousand faculty employed in BSW
and MSW programs that do not offer the doc-
toral degree, and to calculate their corresponding
H-Indices. It is possible that some faculty among
these nondoctoral-granting programs would have
appeared in our list of most influential scholars if
their citations had been similarly calculated.
Although this is unlikely to be the case, other
scholars may wish to undertake this type of more
in-depth analysis.
The conventional H-Index tends to favor older,
more established scholars who have been publish-
ing over a longer time frame, with this longevity
making possible a higher H-Index. One must have
high number of publications to have a high H-
Index, although quantity of papers does not ensure
the subsequent citations needed to develop a high
H-Index. A variant of the H-Index, the i10-index,
takes into account only papers that have received
10 new citations during the past 5 years. This
attenuates to some extent the role of longevity in
promoting a high H-Index. This analysis only
examined the H-Indices of faculty currently
employed within social work programs. This is
another limitation. No doubt many long (and
recently) deceased, retired, or emeritus social
workers would have appeared on our list had we
had the resources available to conduct such a com-
plicated retrieval process. Social work faculty
whose works appear in nonEnglish language jour-
nals will not have these articles retrieved by
Google Scholar, which is another limitation.
In his original paper outlining the H-Index,
Hirsch sounded a proper warning: Obviously a
single number can never give more than a rough
approximation of an individuals multifaceted
profile, and many other factors should be consid-
ered in combination in evaluating an individual
(2005, p. 16571). This caution is warranted. For
example, one may exert considerable positive dis-
ciplinary influence through nonresearch-related
activities. The legislative career of former U.S.
Senator Barbara Mikulski, the financial counsel-
ing empire of Suzie Orman, and the inspirational
talks and books of Bene Brown, social workers
all, come to mind in this regard and they deserve
honor for the roles they have played. However,
for social workers that have chosen an academic
career at a university that emphasizes research
and publications, the role of citation metrics such
as the H-Index is a useful tool to gauge ones
scholarly influence. This listing of the 100 most
influential contemporary social work faculty may
serve as a stimulus for future research into the
causes and correlates of such high achievement
(see Corcoran, Robbins, Hepler, & Magner, 1987)
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Barner, J. R., Holosko, M. J., Thyer, B. A., & King, S.
(2015). Research productivity in top- ranked schools in
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G. W. (1987). Support systems and scholarly activity.
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Farrell, A. H., Semplonius, T., Shapira, M., Zhou, X.,
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700 T. E. SMITH ET AL.
... As social work has matured as a field, scholars have attempted to map various features of the profession's disciplinary knowledge production . Included among these are efforts to identify key contributors to social work discourse (Thyer et al., 2019). In other words, this growing body of research attempts to identify the scholars who are playing prominent roles in contributing to the profession's distinct knowledge base (Hodge et al., 2012). ...
... In social work, the h-index-calculated by harvesting citations from Google Scholar-has been widely used to identify prominent faculty and their associated characteristics (Huggins-Hoyt, 2018). More specifically, this general measure has been used to examine faculty dissemination of impactful scholarship in Australia (Tilbury et al., 2022), Canada (Holosko et al., 2018), Hong Kong (Holosko, 2022), and the United States (Thyer et al., 2019). The Google Scholar h-index has also been used to identify the top Fellows affiliated with the Society for Social Work and Research and the American Academy of Social Work and Social Welfare (Hodge et al., 2016). ...
... As noted above, the scholarly impact of social workers' scholarship has been examined in several studies (e.g., Holosko, 2022;Thyer et al., 2019). This research makes an important contribution to the literature, but the studies typically employ different sampling frames. ...
Full-text available
Purpose: This study identified the top 100 most impactful global contributors to social work journal scholarship. Methods: To conduct this descriptive study, we used a publicly available database of the world's leading scientists. After extracting all scholars in the social work category, we rank ordered them according to a composite measure of scholarly impact that controls for self-citations and author order. Results: All identified contributors to the profession's journals ranked highly relative to the larger global population of published scientists. Furthermore, 23 individuals were in the top 100,000 scientists globally. Scholars were based in seven different nations and most had solid social work credentials according to three measures: current affiliation in a social work program and Master of Social Work/doctoral degree status. Conclusions: The results reveal that social work is home to some of the world's leading scientists. Leveraging their skills and knowledge can help advance the profession's collective knowledge development and dissemination.
... In any academic field, a relatively small number of individuals contribute to the discipline's knowledge base (Thyer et al., 2019). This study identifies those international scholars who have played a major role in contributing to English-language gerontological journals over the course of their careers and maps their academic affiliations. ...
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The two aims of this study were to: 1) identify the 100 most impactful contributors to English-language gerontological journals, and 2) map their respective disciplinary affiliations to help illuminate the perspectives shaping gerontological discourse. Toward that end, we conducted a secondary data analysis of a publicly available database of the world's leading scientists. After extracting all scientists in the gerontological category, we rank ordered them according to a composite measure of scholarly impact that controls for self-citations and author order while also calculating other bibliometric statistics. Disciplinary affiliations were assigned based upon the Classification of Instructional Programs codes developed by the National Center for Education Statistics at the United States Department of Education. The results reveal the mean contributor to the gerontological literature published 241.15 (SD = 203.95) papers and - after correcting for self-citations - had an h-index of 50.05 (SD = 25.00), and an hm-index 23.67 (SD = 7.50). A diverse array of professional affiliations characterized the contributors with a plurality being located in the health professions category, followed by the biological and biomedical science, and social sciences categories. The results reveal that gerontology is home to some of the world's leading scientists. Leveraging their expertise can help advance the field's collective knowledge development.
... Google Scholar is a source for h-index values (Dabós, Gantman & Fernández Rodríguez, 2019;Delgado & Repiso, 2013;García-Pérez, 2010;Mester, 2017;Thyer, Smith, Osteen & Carter, 2019). As with any data source, especially when examined from a critical perspective, the benefit is derived through an interrogation of the relative strengths, weaknesses, and accuracy of the data. ...
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Faculty performance assessments increasingly use the h-index. Designed to account for publication quantity and effect, the h-index informs organizational discussions and internal narratives. However, its use in business schools is problematic for two reasons. First, tension exists between the positivist approach of management and the reflexive approach of critical management studies. Second, the use of the h-index is hegemonic, privileging one group and construct over another. Given the power asymmetry between senior and junior faculty, discussions around one's h-index could be unavoidable. Using Google Scholar, this study compared the h-index values of those in critical management studies with those in management. Examining these data descriptively revealed that the h-index of those in critical research were greater than those in management at the assistant, associate, and full professor levels. Incorporating these findings, even if skeptical of positivism, is constructive for the advancement and continuation of critical business research.
... Será probablemente la piedra de toque del entramado metodológico en el que se apoyará la educación social en el futuro. Retomamos así ideas clave de la «investigación basada en la evidencia» y la «práctica basada en la evidencia» (Thyer, 2015;Thyer et al., 2019). Nos posicionamos de esta forma dentro de un modelo que propone la integración del conocimiento generado desde disciplinas que pueden ser muy diversas. ...
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En este trabajo se investiga acerca del uso que dan los adolescentes a las TIC y, más concretamente, a las redes sociales. Así mismo, nuestra atención ha estado dirigida a comprender los procesos de comunicación, interacción y relación de los adolescentes con sus iguales y la empatía o no presente en sus interacciones comunicativas. Se ha realizado la investigación en una muestra inicial perteneciente a estudiantes de ESO de centros de la Comunidad de Madrid
... To obtain a national sample of faculty, we began by obtaining a list of social work programs offering PhD degrees (N 5 75) from the Group for the Advancement of Doctoral Education in Social Work (Thyer et al., 2019). As Smith et al. (2018) noted, programs offering PhD degrees are likely to have academic cultures that prioritize the creation and dissemination of knowledge. ...
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Objective: Publishing in highly ranked disciplinary journals plays a critical role in career advancement. Yet, the process through which journals are classified as top-tier is largely unexamined in the social work literature. To better understand the utility of various methods for determining journal quality, we compare three basic approaches to ranking disciplinary journals: reputation, h-index values, and impact factors (IFs). More specifically, we compare faculty perceptions of social work journals in 2019 with faculty perceptions in 2000, Google Scholar h-index rankings from 2010, and Clarivate Analytics’ IFs from 2008 and 2017. Method: To create a current, reputation-based ranking of disciplinarily periodicals, a national sample of tenure-track faculty (N 5 307) evaluated the overall quality and prestige of social work periodicals (N 5 64). We obtained prior faculty perceptions of quality and prestige from Sellers et al. (2004), h-index values from Hodge and Lacasse (2011), and 2008 and 2017 IFs from Clarivate Analytics’ Web of Science portal. Results: Faculty perceptions of quality exhibited a relatively strong correlation with faculty perceptions in 2000 (rs 5 .76), suggesting that faculty perceptions regarding journal quality are relatively stable across decades. Among the citationbased approaches, the 2010 Google Scholar h-index values exhibited the strongest correlation with current faculty perceptions (rs 5 .81), and the 2017 IFs had the lowest correlation (rs 5 .48). Conclusions: The results provide some guidance to disciplinary stakeholders making assessments about top-tier journals. For instance, the relative stability of faculty perceptions enables scholars to have some confidence that journals that are currently perceived as top-tier will remain so in the future. Results also raise questions about the utility of relying upon IFs in assessments of journal quality.
... Indigenous Australian scholars may have extra demands on their time to share cultural and professional expertise, for example, to advise on Indigenised curricula or sit on university committees, which reduce time for research (Asmar & Page, 2018). Generally, men have longer careers so produce more papers than women; women publish more domestically so miss out on citations that international collaborations accrue; and men are more likely to self-cite so gender disparity worsens (Thyer et al., 2019;Wilsdon et al., 2015). Early-career academics are often on casual or teachingfocused contracts, which limit their capacity to research (Wilsdon et al., 2015). ...
Understanding the scholarly impact of social work research can inform strategies to strengthen the profession’s research foundations. This study examined research productivity and academic impact using h-indexes for a sample of 112 Australian social work researchers according to the stage of their career. Annual research output was calculated using Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA) data. The average h-index for all social work researchers in the sample was 6.39 (Scopus) and 12.5 (Google Scholar). Web of Science was not used due to the number of inaccurate researcher profiles. One hundred and thirty-nine publications received 100 or more citations, but there were many never-cited publications. A social work benchmark for the number of publications is around 1.4 publications per year, depending upon a person’s stage of career and workload profile. Citation analysis can supplement peer review in evaluating research quality, but there are disciplinary differences in publication and citation practices, so it is useful to know where social work is positioned. IMPLICATIONS • Citation analysis is used to assess research productivity and quality alongside qualitative assessment, such as peer review. • It is imperative for researchers to check, correct, and claim Google Scholar, Scopus and Web of Science records, and to link these to their ORCID profile. • A citation benchmark for social work would be in the range of h-index 3.2 for early-career researchers to 15.8 for research-focused positions (Scopus) or h-index 6.1–25.0 (Google Scholar).
Purpose: Bibliometric analysis has been widely adopted to measure individual productivity and discipline development. This study aims to advance the application of this method in the social work discipline. Method: Using the knowledge mapping technique in CiteSpace 5.8.R3, this study performed a co-word analysis of 1,007 first-authored articles published from 2000 to 2022 by 60 scholars who are listed among the top 2% most-cited scholars on social work and are holding doctoral degrees in the same field. Results: The cluster analysis identified seven main research hotspots and burst detection results revealed four groups of research frontiers, including spiritual and cultural needs, children's wellbeing, social work practices and development, and social work research, with bullying and peer victimization, particularly among African-American adolescents and youth in Chicago's southside, continuing to attract much research interest. Discussion: This study examines how individual works contribute to the conceptual structure and scientific evolution of social work.
Finding leading scholars in a field effectively and efficiently is important and challenging in the science of science research. The present study focused on a specific field of mobile phone behavior as a prototypical case to demonstrate at a microscopic level the real-world complexity of how to find leading scholars in a newly emerging and highly interdisciplinary field of research scientifically. It used a novel mixed method combining content analysis and bibliometric analysis to identify and verify leading scholars in the field effectively and efficiently. The major findings of the study include that (1) a total of 390 leading scholars in the field have been identified based on explicit recognition by 260 authors of 102 chapters of an encyclopedia of mobile phone behavior; (2) overall, peer recognition evidence of the identified 390 leading scholars and bibliometric evidence of the three indicators for verifying leader scholars are relatively consistent; (3) among the four categories of the 390 leading scholars, the dominant one is the 273 scholars who receive only one peer recognition but have strong bibliometric evidence, potentially due to the nature of either an emerging filed or an interdisciplinary field; and (4) the highest-cited citations could be considered the best bibliometric indicators for verifying leading scholars effectively and efficiently. Implications, future directions, and limitations are discussed.
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Zusammenfassung Die Zeitschrift Soziale Passagen feierte 2019 ihr zehn-jähriges Bestehen. Sie hat sich in den letzten Jahren als eine zentrale disziplinorientierte Fachzeitschrift etabliert, die den wissenschaftlichen Dialog als Praxis der Sozialen Arbeit begreift. Dieser runde Geburtstag wird zum Anlass genommen, die Zeitschrift selbst – und somit ihre Beiträge – auf empirischer Basis zu reflektieren. Es soll der Frage nachgegangen werden, welche Themen in den letzten zehn Jahren in welchen Zusammenhängen diskutiert wurden und wie sich diese inhaltlichen Schwerpunkte seit Gründung der Zeitschrift entwickelt haben. Datengrundlage für diese empirische und explorative Untersuchung sind 255 Artikel der Zeitschrift aus den letzten zehn Jahren. Um einen Ein- und Überblick über die inhaltlichen Diskussionen in der Zeitschrift zu bekommen, wird eine Methode der quantitativen Textanalyse, die Latent Dirichlet Allocation (LDA), herangezogen. Im Gegensatz zu einfachen Frequenzanalysen von Wörtern, kann das probabilistische Modell latente semantische Strukturen in den Texten untersuchen und automatisiert Themen extrahieren. Entsprechend der Selbstbeschreibung der Zeitschrift Soziale Passagen zeigen die Ergebnisse verschiedene Schwerpunkte aus der Empirie und Theorie Sozialer Arbeit unter den meist diskutierten Themen. Es wird ein breites Themenspektrum sichtbar, welches sich über die Zeit trendförmig verändert. Die zentralen Themen lassen sich auch auf Basis ihrer semantischen Nähe in verschiedene Cluster zusammenfassen. Beispielsweise zeigt sich, dass die Themen „Evaluationsstudien“ und „Empirische Forschung“ eine Nähe zu „Profession und Feldtheorie“, sowie zu „Diskurs und Körper“ aufweisen, was auf eine hohe Anschlussfähigkeit empirischer Forschung insbesondere zur Professionsforschung verweist. Diese und weitere Erkenntnisse, sowie eine kritische Analyse und die Potenziale des methodischen Vorgehens werden abschließend diskutiert.
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How common is self-citation in scholarly publication, and does the practice vary by gender? Using novel methods and a data set of 1.5 million research papers in the scholarly database JSTOR published between 1779 and 2011, the authors find that nearly 10 percent of references are self-citations by a paper’s authors. The findings also show that between 1779 and 2011, men cited their own papers 56 percent more than did women. In the last two decades of data, men self-cited 70 percent more than women. Women are also more than 10 percentage points more likely than men to not cite their own previous work at all. While these patterns could result from differences in the number of papers that men and women authors have published rather than gender-specific patterns of self-citation behavior, this gender gap in self-citation rates has remained stable over the last 50 years, despite increased representation of women in academia. The authors break down self-citation patterns by academic field and number of authors and comment on potential mechanisms behind these observations. These findings have important implications for scholarly visibility and cumulative advantage in academic careers.
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The purpose of this study was to summarise recent research activity from 2009 to 2013 of faculty in Canadian developmental psychology programs, as there have been no previous studies on this stream in Canada. Rankings for research productivity (i.e., number of publications) and impact (e.g., citation counts) were evaluated using the Publish or Perish software. Various metrics of impact factor were calculated (e.g., h-index, hI-index, hI, annual-index, and g-index). These metrics were evaluated both with and without the most contributing faculty member to examine both the breadth and depth of each program. Overall, while some universities had relatively stable rankings across all the metrics, rankings for other universities fluctuated depending on the metric and whether or not the top contributing faculty member was included. Implications for both students and faculty members with respect to graduate studies are discussed.
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The h-index for all social work and psychology tenured or tenure-track faculty in the top 25 social work programs and psychology departments as ranked by U.S. News and World Report in 2012 and 2013, respectively, were obtained, permitting comparison of the scholarly influence between members (N = 1,939) of the two fields. This involved N = 970 social work faculty and N = 969 psychology faculty. The average h-index for social work and psychology faculty were 6.62 and 15.67, respectively. This more rigorously designed controlled-comparative study contraindicates prior research that showed social work faculty to be relatively equal to psychology, in terms of its scholarly influence. Results are discussed in terms of discipline-specific research pedagogy and practice in psychology.
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We systematically identified eminent psychologists, first using 6 sources to create an initial list of 348 eminent psychologists, and then using 3 criteria (citation metrics, textbook page coverage, and major awards) to select the most highly recognized psychologists. The rankings we produced corresponded highly with other indicators of eminence, and the top 200 are reported in the article. We also identified individuals who scored very high across all 3 indicators, as well as scientists who scored high when only 2 indicators were used. Individuals such as Daniel Kahneman and Albert Bandura ranked very high on the list of modern eminent psychologists. We found that the citation rate of the most eminent psychologists is growing at extremely high rates. A few high-prestige psychology departments heavily contributed to the doctoral education of a large number of the eminent psychologists. The most eminent researchers published an extremely large number of publications over many years; their renown rarely rested on 1 or 2 classics alone. High eminence was rarely achieved before age 50, and most of the eminent psychologists worked until late in their lives. Women are slowly gaining in eminence, but still lag substantially behind compared with their growing presence in scientific psychology. The numbers for ethnic minorities are disturbingly low and are a major concern for the field. Highly eminent psychologists come from many areas of psychology, not just from a few elite areas.
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Highly cited papers are an important reference point in a research field. H-Classics is a new identification method of highly cited papers that is based on the H-index and is sensitive to the own characteristics of any research discipline and also its evolution. Recently, Ho (Scientometrics 98(1):137–155, 2014) presented a study on highly cited papers in Social Work area using as selection criterion a citation threshold value equal to 50 citations received. In this paper, we present a new study on the highly cited papers in Social Work discipline which is developed using the concept of H-Classics. This new study provides more precise results and a different vision on Social Work area.
This study sought to update norms for scholarly publication and citation impact for Australian Group of Eight (Go8) university psychology academics published by McNally (2010). Publication and citation data for 279 Go8 psychology academics were extracted using the Scopus and Google Scholar databases. Norms for career-wise publications, citations, and the h-index were developed for each academic level (from Lecturer to Professor), and eight-year publication counts for 2009–2016 were compared with the 2001–2008 figures reported by McNally. Evidence of a steep increase in scholarly productivity was found relative to McNally (2010), and new norms were generated. There was notable variation between psychology subdisciplines, with neuroscience and clinical science academics typically having higher publication and citation counts than their cognitive psychology peers. Norms for scholarly productivity and citation impact among Australian psychology academics have undergone substantial change in recent years. Caveats concerning the application of research metrics are discussed.
Objective The purpose of this study was to identify and describe the bibliometric contributions of high-impact social work faculty. Methods Toward this end, we used a sample comprising fellows ( N = 143) affiliated with the Society for Social Work and Research (SSWR) and the American Academy of Social Work and Social Welfare (AASWSW). To quantify impact, we relied primarily upon the h-index (a measure of lifetime scholarly impact) and the m-index (which adjusts for career length). Results Analyses revealed the mean h-index value for SSWR fellows ( M = 26.44, SD = 14.72) was substantially lower than the mean for AASWSW fellows ( M = 32.52, SD = 15.96), but minimal differences existed in m-index values. H- and m-index values for the 40 highest impact scholars ranged, respectively, from 33 to 93 and 1.13 to 3.33. Conclusions The results indicate the social work profession includes many researchers who are making an exceptional scientific impact.
Faculty scholarship at historically Black colleges and universities (HBCU) has in the past served as a blueprint for the Black masses. Even today, HBCU faculty scholarship continues to be an informative source to communicate accurate information regarding marginalized groups. This study examines h-index scores of 65 faculty members at five doctorate-granting schools of social work. The majority of calculated h-index scores were considered to be low in terms of productivity. We make the argument that these scores are not a good measure of productivity because of the problematic nature of their use to evaluate HBCU faculty. Implications for future research, practice, and teaching are presented.
It has become increasingly common to rely on the h index to assess scientists’ contributions to their fields, and this is true in psychology. This metric is now used in many psychology departments and universities to make important decisions about hiring, promotions, raises, and awards. Yet, a growing body of research shows that there are gender differences in citations and h indices. We sought to draw attention to this literature, particularly in psychology. We describe the presence of a gender effect in h index in psychology and analyze why the effect is important to consider. To illustrate the importance of this effect, we translate the observed gender effect into a meaningful metric—that of salary—and show that the gender difference in h index could translate into significant financial costs for female faculty. A variety of factors are discussed that have been shown to give rise to gender differences in impact. We conclude that the h index, like many other metrics, may reflect systematic gender differences in academia, and we suggest using caution when relying on this metric to promote and reward academic psychologists.